FWP selects seven for citizen advisory committee

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks has made the selection for the Madison River Recreation Management Citizen Advisory Committee and three Madison County residents are part of the seven-member group.

Ennis fly fishing outfitter and guide Joe Dilschneider, Tackle Shop owner and fly fishing outfitter John Way, and Cameron resident and rancher Joe Fontaine are on the committee. Lee McKenna, who is listed as a resident of both Helena and Ennis is also on the committee.

Rounding out the group is Fishing Outfitters Association of Montana executive director Robin Cunningham, and Bozeman residents Bob Gibson and Philip Naro.

The group will meet several times in the next six months to advise FWP on a river recreation management plan for the Madison River.

The agency decided last fall to move forward with a recreation management plan for the river. Since then FWP officials have held public scoping meetings around the region and solicited comments on the idea through their website. These comments will be added to angling surveys all ready compiled about the Madison River and presented to the CAC.

The plan has raised significant concern among some outfitters and guides along with local business owners who worry that a recreation plan may be implemented to curtail commercial use on the Madison River, which is a significant part of Madison Valley’s economy.

According to a press release announcing the committee, FWP received 33 applications from people interested in serving on the committee. Initially, officials anticipated the group being comprised of 10 – 12 people.

“The seven members … are a cross-section of the public that recreates on the Madison River and those who are affected by recreation management decisions,” reads the announcement. “The committee members’ interests are diverse and include angling, tubing, boating, nature watching, outfitting, conservation, and tourism.”

The first meeting of the group will be May 30 at the FWP Region 3 headquarters in Bozeman. The meeting will be from 4 – 8 p.m.

For additional information look on the FWP website at fwp.mt.gov/recreation/management/madison/default.html. Or call FWP river recreation manager, Cheryl Morris, at 994-6359.

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